Prison chaplain was 'conned' into thinking London Bridge terror attacker felt remorse

Usman Khan was shot dead at the scene by police.(Photo: Twitter/ClareRobbo1000)

A prison chaplain giving evidence on the Fishmongers' Hall terrorist attack near London Bridge says the attacker had appeared to show remorse.

The Rev Paul Foster made the admission while giving evidence at inquests into the deaths of victims Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23. 

Attacker Usman Khan was shot dead by police after being restrained by members of the public in the November 2019 attack. 

He carried out the attack less than a year after being released from prison on licence after serving a sentence over a terror plot. 

During his time in prison, he took part in programmes encouraging inmates to examine the impact of their crime. 

Rev Foster told the inquest that Khan had spoken with him "about wanting to change and make a fresh start - to pay more attention to the ripple effect of his actions," the BBC reports.

On one occasion, Khan had expressed "some shame" about his past actions and "appeared to show remorse for what he had done," Rev Foster said. 

When Jonathan Hough QC, counsel to the inquiry, asked if it would surprise him to learn that there was intelligence suggesting Khan was trying to radicalise other prisoners around this time, Rev Foster admitted it would.

When Mr Hough added that there was other intelligence suggesting Khan might commit an attack after his release from prison, Mr Foster said: "That would be a surprise.

"If that intelligence is correct, he was obviously presenting himself in a way that was likely to deceive the likes of myself and others."

He added: "I'm open to say I am wrong, and it is possible I have been conned."